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February 03, 2009
Today, in the nooks and crannies of the blogosphere, wherever the Tuesdays with Dorie bakers are, it's World Peace Day. As I think I explained when it was my turn to choose the TWD recipe (I chose the French Pear Tart), Tuesdays with Dorie is a group of more than 400 baking bloggers who bake something from Baking: From My Home to Yours each week and then post about it on Tuesday. Started by Laurie Woodward, the group has been baking for more than a year, which is surprising on its own and makes it even more surprising that a member of the group didn't choose World Peace Cookies earlier. I say this because at last check there were, incredibly, 463,000 links on Google for the cookies! But in a world that needs as much peace as it can get, better late than never ...
The cookies, for those of you who don't know them, are chocolate sables, French shortbreads, but, because they've got more brown sugar than white in them, they've got more chew than most shortbreads. They've also got a generous amount of dark chocolate chunks and enough fleur de sel, moist, coarse-grained French "finishing" salt (i.e., salt to be used in teensy quantities as a spice or condiment), to make them noticeably salty and completely addictive, in the way so many good things with salt are.
I was given the recipe in 2000 by Pierre Herme, who had created the cookie for a restaurant in Paris called Korova and so, when I included the recipe in Paris Sweets: Great Desserts From the City's Best Pastry Shops, I naturally dubbed the sables Korova Cookies. I don't have the stats to prove it, but my guess is that those cookies were the most frequently made recipe in the book.
Because the cookies had become such a hit -- and because I was making batches of them at least once a week -- I wanted to reprise the recipe in Baking From My Home to Yours and had it all written and ready to go when I ran into my neighbor, Richard Gold, who couldn't stop talking about how much he loved the Korovas and how much everyone he'd ever made them for loved them too. "In fact," he said, "in our house, we call them World Peace Cookies, because we're convinced that a daily dose of the cookies is all that's needed to ensure planetary peace and happiness."
How could I not rename them World Peace Cookies!
And the story continues. Shortly after BFMHTY was published, I received a letter from a member of a California group called Grandmothers for Peace. The Grandmothers believe that peace can be achieved one cookie at a time and so, every week, members of the group bake, assemble on a street corner and hand out their cookies to passersby. But there's a string attached -- you only get a cookie if you agree to bake your own cookies and pass them on to others. The letter was a request to make World Peace Cookies the group's official sweet. Of course I agreed and, last I heard, WPCs, recipe included, were still being passed out every Saturday.
Now that you've got the backstory on the cookies, I hope you'll make them. You can find the recipe at Cookbook Habit. (Because Jessica of Cookbook Habit chose the recipe for TWD, she gets to post it for the group.)
One last word. I noticed that some of the TWD bakers mentioned that their dough was crumbly and a little difficult to form into logs -- WPCs are slice-and-bakes. I've had the crumbly problem from time to time, which is why I mention the possibility in the recipe, and I've come to think that the culprit might be the cocoa powder. It seems to me that Dutch-processed cocoa makes an easier-to-handle dough than "natural" cocoa. I've had very crumbly dough using Sacco brand cocoa and I've made my best cookies with premium cocoa powders from Cocoa PowderValrhona and Scharffenberger. As for supermarket brands, Droste is my pick.
Tags: Baking From My Home to Yours
, fleur de sel
, Korova Cookies
, Laurie Woodward
, Pierre Herme
, Tuesdays with Dorie
, World Peace Cookies
Restaurants, Chefs, & Artisans
| February 3, 2009 8:54 PM
Hi Dorie....These cookies need to come with a word of warning...once you make them, they become the only cookie that you are ever allowed to bake again! My partner wants them every other day it seems...over anything else I bake.Thanks for the enjoyment and the great recipes.
| February 3, 2009 8:54 PM
What an incredible group the Grandmothers are, and how neat that this is their official cookie. I loved them - salty and most definitely addictive.
| February 3, 2009 9:22 PM
Theses cookies were amazing- I have thought about trying them a few times and I was really excited when I saw that someone had finally picked them as our TWD recipe of the week! Thank you so much for a cookie that will become a standard in my baking repertoire!
| February 3, 2009 9:35 PM
I want to thank you for such a great recipe. They are so unusual in their interplay of texture and seemingly conflicting tastes. Yet they are delicious and addictive. I will make these again and again!
| February 3, 2009 10:29 PM
Hi Dorie - I love your blog and these look absolutely delicious. I've seen them all over the place this week and am definitely going to try them sometime.
| February 4, 2009 2:37 AM
Thanks so much for sharing more of the history of these cookies with us Dorie. I am afraid I had to pass on this week's recipe, but I may bake them at some time in the future for the Young Women at church. I think that they would really like them. How wonderful that they are a part of something much larger than a cookie recipe, but a life enriching and changing on going event, Grandmother's for Peace!! Most of us can only hope to make such a difference. I shall be flying in to America on Friday. Unfortunately it's not to the East Coast, unless you count my stopover in Atlanta.
| February 4, 2009 4:41 AM
Thank you, they look scrummy. Would you have the amounts in metric? I have measuring cups. But I never know what a stick of butter equates to.
| February 4, 2009 5:04 AM
Well I guess these cookies will be my next foray into baking. I love all your books, Dorie. You are on the very short list of cookbook authors whose books I will buy sight unseen.
| February 4, 2009 6:49 AM
Hi Dorie! Boy I love, love, love these cookies. And I made the foolish mistake of trying to be creative with them and making an adaptation. I've learned my lesson...never again! :)
What a sweet story about the California group. You World Peace Cookies are so appropriate for passing around!
| February 4, 2009 7:54 AM
How awesome is that?! Now I totally want to start handing out cookies with that caveat. And thanks for explaining why these have a chewier texture - I think I'm going to start making that sub in all of my sables. I really like chewy over crumbly, and these are my favorite. I almost always have a log of them in my freezer, in one flavor variation or another (this week was cappuccino).
| February 4, 2009 9:42 AM
Oh I am loving the salty-sweet thing...so delicious! OK, these are next on my list. After David Lebovitz's chocolate biscotti. I obviously will be gaining about 50 pounds over the weekend.
| February 4, 2009 10:41 AM
I love these cookies, Dorie. And all of my friends that have eaten them love them too. I've been making them ever since I bought your book several years ago. I've been thinking about making these for Valentine's Day with a mango sorbet.
Emily (La DerniÃ¨re Miette)
| February 4, 2009 11:59 AM
These sound amazing Dorie! I adore sweet things with a touch of salt. This afternoon in a Cambodian restaurant in the 11th I asked for salt to go with my Tapioca and sweet coconut sauce dessert (like they do in Thailand). I got a very strange look from my French waiter, who also offered me fish sauce to go with it. But it was delicious (with the salt that is, I declined the fish sauce!)
Looking forward to trying the WPC, but am afraid of potential dangerous addictive quality.
| February 4, 2009 3:37 PM
Such a nice story about Grandmothers for Peace! :) Thanks so much for this delicious recipe. This was my second time making them, and I'm sure I'll be making them many more times:)
| February 4, 2009 3:57 PM
Dori - What a heartwarming story, I nominate you to be our Special Peace Envoy. We need that now more than ever.
| February 4, 2009 6:17 PM
Ah Dorie, Thank you for expanding even more on the history of these precious little chocolate sweet "peaces" of heaven. I think all the TWD bakers and anyone else for that matter, would probably offer their thanks to you as well as Pierre Herme for creating these wonderful cookies. Its a good thing you two are such good friends who happen to have an affinity for sweets and sharing. Who knows where this world would be if not.... ? Anyway, thank you for the book and thank you for the post about this marvelous, maybe my favorite recipe in the whole book, so far.
| February 4, 2009 7:57 PM
Hi, Dorie, I love your posts. could you expand a bit on biscotti? When I cut them after the first baking, they are a bit ragged no matter how careful I am and the ends want to break off. when I see commercial biscotti in stores they look like a laser has cut them they are so precise. Is it possible to cut the raw loaf and only bake them once?
| February 4, 2009 8:56 PM
Thank you, thank you for releasing this recipe into the world! It may not solve all the world's problems, but a few minutes of peaceful munching multiplied by a few hundred (or thousand) has to count for something. It's been so gratifying to have people thank me for picking this recipe this week, and hearing how many people just love this cookie. I knew I loved them, but I didn't know they were this big of a sensation! Thank you for your kind words, for your support of our group, and for such wonderful books.
| February 4, 2009 9:53 PM
These cookies are absolutely amazing, the best cookies I've ever had. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
| February 4, 2009 11:11 PM
My new favorites! Thanks once again. You never let me down!
| February 5, 2009 12:22 AM
I've made the cookies using Penzeys brand cocoa with excellent results. (I typically use dutch-processed based on Cooks Illustrated recommendation.) Although the dough was somewhat crumbly, it was coaxed into logs without much effort. It was like having a magic wand of chocolate in the fridge. Fabulous!
| February 5, 2009 8:30 AM
Dorie, you already know how I feel about these cookies! They are delicious and a big hit on the homefront. There is a batch in my cookie jar this morning, in fact!
| February 5, 2009 10:50 AM
I was so pleased to see all of the World Peace cookies floating around in blog land! They truly are my favorite!! Thanks for such an amazing cookie Dorie!! We make them all of the time. Joshua loves them with milk:) I hope you are well!
| February 5, 2009 11:40 AM
These cookies have been my favourite for years now. So much so that in my baking business as a farmers markert vendor I refused to include them on my menu because I feared I would not want them anymore, as had happened to other former favourite cookies that I started to mass bake. These are my treasure.
| February 5, 2009 11:44 AM
I've made the lemon sables from Paris Sweets and will have to try the Korova/World Peace Cookies next!
| February 5, 2009 1:20 PM
These are great cookies. I don't know why it took me so long to finally make them. They are so easy to make and the taste is so wonderful, I can see why people make them over and over again.
| February 5, 2009 2:31 PM
there cookies are so tasty! just another reason why i love this cookbook! THANKS
| February 5, 2009 3:40 PM
I just felt compelled to make these again about a week ago. They did not disappoint.
T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types
| February 5, 2009 9:32 PM
What a tasty way to promote world peace, Dorie! I would send a batch to Congress as soon as possible!
| February 6, 2009 9:03 AM
Those are the easiest and best cookies I have EVER had. I like how they are soft and gooey straight out of the oven and then totally different as they cool...more of the sable effect happens. Either way they are to die for!
| February 6, 2009 11:05 AM
I love this cookies too. They are by favorite base for baked alaska. yum.
| February 6, 2009 3:47 PM
That Grandmothers for Peace story is just so cool! I've made (and shared) the WP Cookies so many times, but I never get tired of them. As you say, they are quite addictive. :)
| February 7, 2009 2:03 AM
I am so happy to have finally made these to fully understand what all the hubbub is about. I'm yet another fan; they are fantastic. Your cocoa powder observation is interesting; I used Dutched cocoa and as your theory suggests, had no problem with my dough.
| February 7, 2009 4:57 PM
I love these cookies, and they were included in my Christmas cookie box this year.
Some of my absolute favorites.
| February 9, 2009 10:54 PM
I LOVE these cookies. All the families at my son's school LOVE these cookies. I like to make a log before a gathering and toward the end of the evening, I slice them and put them in the oven. The smell permeates the whole house and then they are gobbled up in minutes. People die over these cookies straight from the oven (I'm soft and gooey gal). Thanks!
| February 14, 2009 1:37 AM
We loved these cookies too! The smell was incredible, and they were the blackest cookies I've ever seen! We also mixed them up a bit, by adding peanut butter chips, milk chocolate chips and white chocolate chips. They were so easy to make, I let my son do the whole thing, start to finish! Boy, was he ever feeling the BIG executive chef!
Thanks Dorie...Peace Out!
| February 15, 2009 6:35 PM
I love these cookies so much I try not to make them very often. They don't make me feel generous at all. I even sprang for some Valrhona cocoa to use in them this time. I still have a half of a log sitting in my freezer just calling my name. Thanks for sharing the recipe with all of us!
Carolina de Witte
| May 18, 2009 10:09 AM
Hi, I know my comment is very late on this topic, but I just wanted you to know that I FINALLY got around to making these, and they were wonderful. I don't know why I waited so long, as I LOVE anything sweet and salty. I DID make a sub, as I used cocoa nibs rather than chocolate chips. I know I used less of the nibs than the amount of chopped chocolate called for, but I'm not sure how much, as I simply sprinkled them in, but my best guess would be about 1/3 cup. I don't know if anyone else would like them like that, but WE all loved them. We are all chocoholics here. Oh, and right before I baked the last dozen I sprinkled the tops of them with a bit more fleur de sel, and wished I had done that to all of them. (I'm a salt addict too...LOL!) Anyway, the next time I make them I will make a double batch so I can freeze some, and I will sprinkle ALL of them with salt. No, I'm not worried about hypertension,(??) cos I really used very little to sprinkle, and I might use a bit less in the dough too. Not sure really, but I don't think a couple of cookies would add up to that much sodium. I just won't make such a 'piggie' of myself next time. Anyway, thanks so much for such a wonderful recipe. It will be my 'go to' recipe from now on. My friends and family all loved them. (When I do the double batch, I might divide it and use the chopped chocolate in half, and the nibs in the other half
| June 8, 2009 9:05 PM
Also a bit late for your post, but I had to join the chorus in praise of this recipe (as well as the army of blogging fans). I couldn't think of anything more tasty or fitting to bring to the celebration of my recent engagement. In case you were wondering, they even pair well with Czech beers.
| November 3, 2009 6:15 PM
Hi, I blogged about you today, and linked to your site! I also linked to the cookie recipe-- I had never made them till today, and WOWSERS! You did not overstate your case!
Have heard you and loved you with Lynn Rosetto-Casper on The Splendid Table, and will have to go buy your book!
Thanks for a great recipe! I hope my blog brings you some new traffic too!
| February 11, 2010 7:52 PM
I've been baking these since they were called Korovas. They're my go to cookie when I want chocolate and crispy. While the dough has been stiff sometimes, I've never had a problem till now.
Made a batch the other week and froze the logs (I always have frozen dough of something around). This time when they baked, the spread with lacey, crumbly edges. Lot's more breakage as I packed them into plastic containers.
I'm pretty sure I measured correctly. Actually, I weighed most of the ingredients as years ago I converted the recipe in BFMHTY (yes, I write directly on the page in the book). Weird but will make more this coming weekend.
| February 14, 2010 7:42 PM
I love the flavor of these cookies but this last batch I made the texture is all wrong. When baking they spread out with the lacy, crumbly edges like Jody's and were quite greasy on the bottom. Where did I go wrong? Help!
| August 23, 2012 2:34 AM
Wanted to drop a note to say that a I followed the directions of one of the previous posters and made a double recipe and pressed them down into a half sheet pan (it was a bit shy on the dough, so I left a gap down one side of the pan but still baked up perfectly)
I did add 1Tablespoon of Sriracha to each batch after I had creamed the butter and the contrast of the heat and the sweet rich chocolate flavor is exceptional!
replied to comment from Lisa Teiger
| August 23, 2012 7:15 PM
Lisa Teiger- Wow- Chocolate plus Sriracha sounds like a winning combination. Thanks so much for sharing your success story with me!
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